By Arianne Brown
In March of 2018, then, Spanish Fork High School Senior, Morgan Olson was crowned Miss Spanish Fork with the platform “Hospital Heroes.” Under this platform, Olson told Serve Daily last year, was about “Being an advocate for children in hospitals.” Over the past year, Olson has done exactly what she set out to do.
“As a Miss Utah candidate, I am an ambassador for the Children’s Miracle Network, working toward raising money to help children in hospitals,” Olson said. “I love this because it goes right in line with my Social Impact Initiative, ‘Hospital Heroes: being an advocate for children in hospitals.’ I love that each candidate is required to be a literal advocate for children in hospitals through raising funds for Primary Children’s Hospital through Children’s Miracle Network. I was able to receive the Miracle Maker award at the Miss Spanish Fork 2018 competition through raising over $900. My goal is to raise $5500 for the Miss Utah Competition.”
But it isn’t just raising money that Olson has done with her Hospital Heroes initiative. In an effort to make the doctors a little less scary, Olson has sewn courage capes for pediatric floors in Utah county and 3D printed courage medallions to be distributed to a local pediatric local clinic.
The capes aren’t just handed out to patients at the hospital, however, but also to children who are there with family members. Giving the capes to children who have siblings in treatment is something that is dear to Olson’s heart because she was a recipient of something similar when she was young.
“The reason I wanted to focus on making hospitals a happy place for children is because when my twin brother and I were about 2 years old, he got ran over by a truck and spent some time at Primary Children’s,” Olson said. “I obviously remember very little about it but, I do remember how the nurses and volunteers made me feel safe there. It wasn’t as scary with them there, and the toys and stuffed animals that they had for me to play with made me feel safe and comforted during that difficult time.”
Olson loves seeing how the children respond when they receive the items, and enjoys hearing stories from parents and nurses about how they’ve helped the children.
“Children love getting these things because it’s something that they can use to pretend that they’re the heroes protecting them, and parents love having a keepsake that brings good memories back from the hospital stay instead of negative feelings,” Olson said. “A nurse recently told me a story about a three year old boy who was at the hospital in the emergency room where his mom was receiving treatment. He was so nervous and scared for his mom until a nurse brought him a cape and said, ‘Now you need to be your moms superhero.’ He stood right up, and was calm and there for his mom.
“The courage medallions always run out so quickly at the clinic! I can’t get them printed fast enough,” Olson continued. “Children love getting something that they can hold onto to get more courage while at the doctors. It’s a little more exciting than just a sticker or toy.”
Although Olson has just a few more months left as Miss Spanish Fork, she remains a Miss Utah Candidate and ambassador for the Children’s Miracle Network, and is still accepting donations toward her $5,500 goal. If you are able to donate to Olson’s platform, go to https://www.missamericaforkids.org/Contestant/morgieo.